Friday, February 10, 2006

Estero Ex-Fire Chief To "Volunteer" In Hendry County?

LABELLE, FL. (February 10, 2006) -- After unexpectedly quitting a high
paying job in December as Estero Fire District's fire chief, Dennis
Merrifield is apparently heading to Hendry county. An item on the February
14th Hendry Commission agenda says Hendry's Emergency Services chief Randy
Bengston will be asking to bring onboard Merrifield as a "volunteer Planning
and Special Projects chief." Merrifield turned down an Estero pay package of
$106,500, heading a department with an $8.6 million budget. We suspect some
deal is pending that will pay Merrifield for his services to Hendry county
after a short "volunteer" duty. Hendry county has highly paid "consultants"
galore who do just about everything for the county from seeking grants to
serving as county attorney and land planning. 42 year old Merrifield left
Estero with a $125,670 severance package and $87,925 in accrued personal
time and retirement benefits.

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